Somewhere between naked and everything but the kitchen sink

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Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2003 12:01 am

Somewhere between naked and everything but the kitchen sink

Postby deaner1971 » Fri Aug 19, 2011 8:22 am


I was just forced to buy a new camera bag as I have exceeded the loadout capacity of my current bag. That raised a question in my mind as to how much gear do I actually need to have at any time (and by "raised" I mean my wife asking me if all of "that" is really necessary).

So, I thought I would come to this learned and august group and see what gear you consider to be the essentials for your photographic wanderings.

Let's say you are looking at a day of walking but not necessarily strenuous hiking/climing. Assume the usual lighting/topographical challenges of our beloved Vermont.

Tripod and monopod? What range of filters? A decent number of lens options or just a couple of super-zooms?



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Location: Saginaw, Michigan

Re: Somewhere between naked and everything but the kitchen s

Postby Andy » Wed Aug 31, 2011 9:09 pm

Hi Dean: Good topic. I have come pretty much "full circle" on "gear." I carry one body (would carry a backup, but cannot justify the $ - though I do carry a P&S backup), just a couple lenses (macro; w/a zoom, and my 18-300 VR). Lenses, of course, depend alot on what you shoot. I find this combination works fine for my landscape.

If you know me, you know that I find a Tripod to be absolulely an essential item (recently, I also acquired a table-top tripod, which I also carry in case I find myself in a situation where I cannot use the full size). A good tripod can last a lifetime, and it is worthwhile spending the $$ up front to get a high quality pod. I also use a cable release. Mounting the camera on a tripod and then touching the camera partly defeats the purpose.

Since I started using digital, I only use one filter regularly -- a circular polarizer. It is the only filter I cannot duplicate the effects of in PS. I do carry a couple square ND filters for those occasions when I want to reduce the light coming through the lens.

In the last year, I have added a bubble level that fits into the hotshoe as an essential item

Extra batteries and memory round out my absolute essentials.

Extras that really help:

Garbage bags (kitchen size makes a wonderful makeshift camera cover in rain / larger ones can double as a ground cloth and poncho)

Boots - hip boots are great for shooting around water

Hat and Gloves in cool weather

Bug repellant (I actually have one of those nets you can put over head and neck)

Flashlight (or headlamp) for night shooting

I am definitely in the "less is more" camp these days

If it sounds too good to be true, its probably . . . .

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